Advancing the New Communications Framework for HIV/AIDS: The Communicative Constitution of HIV/AIDS Networks in Tanzania’s HIV/AIDS NGO Sector

James O. Olufowote, Johnson S. Aranda, Guoyu E. Wang, Danni Liao


Although health communication research on HIV/AIDS has acknowledged the work of HIV/AIDS non-governmental organizations (NGOs), we know little about how such NGOs are collaborating in their response to the epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). UNAIDS estimated that over two-thirds of world-wide HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths take place in SSA and normative models have highlighted organizational collaborations as an important part of the response to public health risks and crises. This study advanced the New Communications Framework for HIV/AIDS by drawing on a constitutive model of communication to develop a discursive perspective on HIV/AIDS NGO collaborations. Analyses of interviews with 36 leaders of Tanzanian HIV/AIDS NGOs resulted in (a) networks of organizations of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) and (b) networks expressing the following identities: as single entities that unify PLWHA organizations in/across administrative divisions, as structures for reaching grassroots PLWHA and facilitating their participation in decision-making forums at various scales, and as vehicles for various social impacts such as advocacy for PLWHA.

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Studies in Media and Communication      ISSN 2325-8071 (Print)   ISSN 2325-808X (Online)

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